San Clemente residents demand action regarding homeless population

(Signs of homelessness at the San Clemente Pier/Sydney Burns)

The city of San Clemente has yet to bring satisfaction to its residents as well as the needy regarding the action being taken to assist the issue of homelessness. 

“I think we should provide health care as well as a sturdy roof over their heads, not just a campsite,” said Amanda Stevenson, a long time San Clemente local.

After the removal of the Avenida Pico homeless campsite, San Clemente has yet to produce change regarding the homeless population. Areas like North Beach, El Camino Real, Pier Bowl and Del Mar have become hotspots for local San Clemente homeless residents. 

“I have been doing this up and down the coast for a while now, said David Lee Tanner, a local homeless man. “I have been in San Clemente just before christmas, but have lived on the streets in Dana Point for a few years now.” 

Tanner has drifted between the small beach towns of San Clemente and Dana Point in the search of somewhere where he can get help. Tanner lost his job as a contruction worker and has failed to keep a job since. 

“Some people are just not mentally or physically capable of living in an environment like this. San Clemente is packed full of money. There are people helping but nothing directly from the city, ” said Tanner. 

He shines a light on the problem the city of San Clemente has, there is no where for the homeless or mentally and or physically incapable to get help. Although there are small organizations like churches and FAM, the city has yet to become seriously involved in the growing population of people living on the streets.

“I know after the Pico campsite closed they were talking about puting them somewhere in the business park,” said Stevenson.

After the removal of the Pico campsite, there has been a stir of opinions from San Clemente locals. Some say that the dog park should be converted into a homeless shelter or another campsite. Others demand more action to be taken to ensure that the homeless are being properly helped with a roof over their heads. 

With many different ideas swarming in the San Clemente community, city council has yet to come out with a plan. Residents as well as homeless residents await the city’s call to action.